Art Basel Hong Kong 2024

About the fair

28 – 30 March, 2024

Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, Wan Chai, Hong Kong

Stand 1D11

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Installation shot at Art Basel Hong Kong 2024

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Installation shot at Art Basel Hong Kong 2024

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Installation shot at Art Basel Hong Kong 2024

Hong Kong—Pearl Lam Galleries is delighted to announce its participation in the Galleries sector of Art Basel Hong Kong 2024. On view is a selection of artworks by a variety of artists from China, Nigeria, Slovakia, the UK, and USA, showcasing the depth of the gallery’s aesthetics. Exhibiting artists include Alimi Adewale (b. 1974, Nigeria), Jana Benitez (b. 1985, USA), Philip Colbert (b. 1979, UK), Mr Doodle (b. 1994, UK), Maggi Hambling (b. 1945, UK), Michal Korman (b. 1987, Slovakia), Antony Micallef (b. 1975, UK), Babajide Olatunji (b. 1989, Nigeria), Su Xiaobai (b. 1949, China), Zhu Jinshi (b. 1954, China), and Zhu Peihong (b. 1987, China).

Alimi Adewale, an artist from Nigeria, embarks on a creative journey centred around unravelling the profound beauty and cultural richness that characterises the African experience. Presenting his latest diptych entitled Sisters of the Earth: A Tapestry of Cultures, he forges a symbolic connection that surpasses boundaries and language. Standing united in solidarity, these sisters reflect the splendour of shared encounters and mutual admiration. The artist encourages viewers to contemplate the magnificence of diversity and the significance of cultural exchange in fostering a more compassionate and understanding world. The work serves as a reminder of our joint obligation to nurture and safeguard our planet, acknowledging that we are all interconnected members of one global family.

Known for capturing the human body’s vitality through gestural abstraction and representational portraiture, Jana Benitez takes a sudden plot twist in her 25 years of art-making. Breaking away from her usual subjects, she delves into the world of flowers. In her Dahlia series, Benitez presents these botanical wonders not as traditional still-life compositions but as portraits. The close-up depictions celebrate the unique qualities of each flower magnifying them to a larger-than-life scale, at least ten times their actual size. Through her artistic exploration, Benitez revels in the richness of sensations that these flowers evoke. She skilfully employs various textures and paint techniques such as brushstrokes, smudging, dripping, reticulation, wiping, and scraping away to convey the infinite vibrancy, intensity, and subtleties inherent in her subjects.

Philip Colbert is often referred to as the “godson of Andy Warhol”. Colbert has created a global following for his cartoon lobster persona and his masterful hyper pop history paintings. His work powerfully explores the patterns of contemporary digital culture and its relationship to a deeper art historical dialogue. Following on from early Pop painters such as Richard Hamilton, Roy Lichtenstein and James Rosenquist. Colbert’s paintings cross high art themes from old master paintings and contemporary art theory with everyday symbols of mass contemporary culture, all narrated through the eyes of Colbert’s cartoon Lobster alter ego. He has been championed as a contemporary pop master by art world figures such as Charles Saatchi & Simon De Pury.

Born with an innate passion for doodling, Mr Doodle has captivated viewers worldwide with his unique artistic vision. His prodigious talent, often labelled as ‘obsessive-compulsive doodling’, has propelled him to fill sketchbooks and adorn walls, floors, and furniture with his intricate doodles, transforming his surroundings and leaving an indelible mark on the world. On view is a recent series titled Mr Doodle in Space. Will Mr & Mrs Doodle make it back to DoodleLand before Mas—aka Mr Doodle’s evil twin, Dr Scribble—completes his mission? First, they’ll have to travel through several different wonderful worlds, along with their faithful companion Doodle Dog! And what about Baby Doodle, where and when will he appear?!  Prepare to be transported to a marvelous celestial domain where boundless imagination takes flight.

Maggi Hambling is a celebrated contemporary painter and sculptor whose work continues to challenge and seduce. Pearl Lam Galleries is delighted to announce Maggi Hambling: The Night, a solo exhibition by Hambling at its Hong Kong gallery, coinciding with this year’s edition of Art Basel Hong Kong. This marks the first solo exhibition by Hambling in Asia since the artist’s museum retrospectives in Beijing and Guangzhou in 2019. Pearl Lam Galleries will also present a painting from Hambling’s celebrated Wall of Water series at its Art Basel Hong Kong stand. Works from this series have been exhibited at the National Gallery, London; The Hermitage, St Peterburg, Russia; and CAFA, Beijing. The Met in New York acquired a Wall of Water painting last year. The series was inspired by the challenging storm surge of the sea crashing against the seawall close to the artist’s Suffolk studio and reflects the power of nature and the impermanent nature of existence. Hambling approaches her subjects with an intensity that constantly reaffirms her passion for life.

Michal Korman began his art education at the age of five when the Slovak academic painter Jozef Jelenak admitted him to his courses for children at the school of art in Korman’s hometown, having formed his artistic foundations for three years. In 2006, the artist mastered the four-year curriculum at the school of art in only two years and graduated with a diploma. Since then, he has continued to develop his style of traditional oil painting using figurative motifs and graphic design. For a few years now, Korman has dedicated his focus and found inspiration in the world of plants. The beauty of flowers, gardens, and the surrounding nature fills him with happiness, which he translates onto the canvas using flat solid oil paint chunks. These chunks serve as both ornaments and motifs, enhancing and disrupting their presence within the composition. What matters most to him is capturing the excitement in the viewer’s eye. The artist currently lives and works in Paris.

Soutine’s Garden pays tribute to Chaïm Soutine (1893–1943), one of Antony Micallef’s favourite painters. Micallef is interested in mixing different visual languages and loves the idea of pushing the boundaries of oil paint to its limit. Each petal is carefully constructed from small slithers of oil paint that take months to dry before being carefully put into place to form a floral element. He wanted this painting to have a distorted rawness that plays with the decorative aspect. His goal was to create an ambiguity that ranges from elements of representation to playful abstraction that echoes the botanical, where the viewer is somewhere in between worlds.

Nigerian-born, London-based artist Babajide Olatunji will be showcasing his hyperrealist pastel and acrylic portraits from his series Tribal Marks. This collection delves into the traditional practice of facial scarification, which has been historically used by rural ethnic tribes in Nigeria for identification and caste classification purposes. Although Olatunji’s subjects are fictional, he skilfully combines facial features from various individuals he has encountered in his everyday life. Pearl Lam Galleries is also delighted to announce Olatunji’s first solo exhibition Atunwa: Portraying the Different Biographies of an Artist at its Shanghai gallery from 30 March through 19 May. On show will be a series of captivating portraitures that explore our collective human experience through the lens of the African diaspora.

In the 1990s, Su Xiaobai, who graduated from the  Kunstakademie Düsseldorf in Germany, moved to the countryside and lived there for ten years. He thought he would stay there forever and planted many trees. By a chance encounter, he lived in southern China for a few months and used local lacquer as his painting material. To this day, he makes colourful, delicate, and subtle paintings with lacquer. Su creates a unique and solid base using wood, plywood, and coarse canvas. He grinds lacquer, pigments, and mineral into a flowing lacquer solution. Various colours are contained in bowls, covered with transparent film. He has mastered the dryness and wetness of the lacquer and controls the concentration of the ‘Xiaobai soup’, allowing colours to permeate and blend with each other on the inclined surface, floating and lingering. The applied coloured repeatedly washes away until nothing is left, leaving behind a a jade-like quality and special literary atmosphere. Su’s works have both an ethereal and substantial existence. The artist lives a simple life. All he needs to be happy is a stack of books, an easel, a wide brush, and a few sheets of paper, all of which he has in his studio. This is also what drives him to go work at his studio every day.

Zhu Jinshi is a pioneer of Chinese abstract art and installation art. Though abstract, his work is rooted in metaphor. Experience—fleeting and internal—is embodied in the inert substance to which it is committed and in which it finds an imaginative and deeply expressive equivalent. On view will be several of Zhu’s signature abstract thick paintings. Kafka’s Magic City, a standalone piece that is not part of a series, is a highly individualistic diptych of impasto painting in the 2020s, representing a new stage of returning to thick brushstroke painting. Previous painting tools were completely abandoned in its creation; instead, a five-centimetre-long black brush served as the foundation, driving the explosiveness of the artistic process. This artwork is rich in colour, resembling a powerful storm. The brushstrokes are vigorous and have the weight of a hydraulic jack.

Zhu Peihong is showcasing a total of four artworks at this year’s Art Basel Hong Kong. A notable piece is from his yellow-black series called Crystal, which is representative of his abstract painting creations throughout the years. Crystal stems from Zhu’s exploration of perceptual perception. In traditional Chinese culture, yellow holds a special significance, symbolising power and nobility. In our contemporary life, yellow resembles a rising sun, brimming with energy. Zhu refers to the yellow utilised in his Crystal artwork as basic yellow. He extensively searched for this shade, visiting several factories and experimenting with various mixtures of yellow until he found the perfect one. Within his colour system, this particular yellow creates a vibrant and lively space.

Selected works